Agriculture Minister Michael Creed has extended the deadline for registration of farmer participants in knowledge transfer groups, from June 30 to July 14.
He said this will allow advisors and farmers further time to finalise arrangements for their knowledge transfer groups.
“These groups will be important support for farmers in addressing a range of competitiveness and sustainability challenges facing the sector.”
Funding of €100m is allocated for these discussion groups across the dairy, beef, equine, sheep, tillage and poultry sectors.
Mr Creed said: “In addition to helping farmers pursue best practice and protect farmers’ incomes, knowledge transfer groups have also been seen to provide a range of social benefits for farmers.”
Knowledge transfer groups will be delivered to farmers by qualified facilitators, with the first groups already approved to hold meetings.
Approved facilitators can submit participant details of knowledge transfer groups for approval at the www.agriculture.gov.ie/agfood website.
Each participating farmer will receive an annual payment of €750 for successful completion of each year of a Knowledge Transfer Group.
Each facilitator will receive an annual payment of €500 per participating farmer who successfully completes each year.
Participating farmers will have to attend five knowledge transfer meetings in each of the three years of their groups (but can arrange for an approved nominee to attend in their place, should the need arise).
Participants must complete an individualised farm improvement plan in conjunction with the group facilitator.
Farmers can attend two groups in different sectors – for example, one beef group and one sheep group.
Given the overlap between the content of groups across sectors, dual participation will attract a 50% payment rate for both the facilitator and the farmer in respect of the second Group joined.
Each KT group will generally consist of 12-18 members.
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